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Leather Bowl


Inspired by seamless leather phone cases, I designed and fabricated a leather bowl. I wanted it to be able to hold water, be dimensionally stable, and created by a repeatable process (suitable for mass production). To that end, I designed an assembly that had a very short tolerance stack from base to top (with no seams on the base or top datum surfaces to introduce large tolerances), a 3D-printed core for dimensional stability, and a leather stretching fixture.


After sketches and a low-resolution protoype, I determined that:

  • Lower, constant curvature works better than high, localized curvature for wrinkle minimization.
  • Original idea had a lip to hide seam between inner and outer leather (brown bowl), double-walled core also offered the opportunity to tuck the leather edges between the walls (red and blue bowl).

Full design and prototyping document:

Finished bowl.

Bowl top view.